Thursday, January 15, 2009

Day 4- January 15, 2009

Tonight on Lawmakers, concern over the budget is expressed by Senate Appropriations Chair Jack Hill, State School Superintendent Kathy Cox speaks to a joint House-Senate Education Committee about education proposals and a special tribute to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. at the State Capitol.

Speaking this morning in the Senate, Appropriations Chair Jack Hill said he believed that Governor Sonny Perdue’s revenue estimates are too optimistic. He used graphs and charts to illustrate that the legislature may have a lot of work ahead if the downward economic trend continues.

Despite the current budget deficit, State School Superintendent Kathy Cox assured legislators at a joint House-Senate Education Committee that education in the State would not suffer. Lawmakers Minoo Hosseini has more.

Healing the State's Trauma Care Network could take up to five years and tens of millions of dollars. That's the conclusion of experts hired by the State's Trauma Network Commission. But behind the bad news, there may be a bit of good news. Lawmakers Valarie Edwards reports.

Senator Steve Thompson took the well this morning on a point of personal privilege to express concern about the Rules approved Monday that maintain “Crossover Day” as legislative day 30. Crossover Day, the deadline by which legislation must be approved by the chamber in which it originates, was changed to Day 30 from Day 33 four years ago. Senator Don Balfour, Chair of the Senate Rules Committee responded that he understands the concern, but that those extra three days are useful for the Senate to consider House Bills before Sine Die.

The 24th annual Georgia State Capitol tribute to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. took place this morning. Governor Sonny Perdue presented a proclamation on behalf of the State to Christine King Ferris, the late Dr. King’s sister. We’ll have highlights from speeches by the Honorable Michael Steele, former Lieutenant Governor of Maryland, Senator Emanuel Jones and Representative Melvin Everson.

The rules and penalties for using cell phones while driving could get tighter for Georgia drivers if any of three proposed bills pass this session. Lawmakers’ Emily Banks has the details.

Legislators were briefed about the television digital transition this week. It's only 33 days away. Are you prepared? Lawmakers’ Brittany Evans shares what legislators have learned.

And Lawmakers’ Evan Seitz explores the presence of wildlife under the gold dome today. We’ll have all that and more on Lawmakers at 7 PM.

Lawmakers repeats on GPB Radio at 8 PM tonight and on GPB television at 5 AM the tomorrow morning. You can also catch a repeat of Lawmakers on GPB Knowledge at 7 AM tomorrow. GPB Knowledge is available to those with digital television receivers at .3 of your local GPB transmitter, for example 20.3 in Augusta, or 8.3 in Atlanta.